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St. Kitts/Nevis

Government of Italy and UNICEF ECO to support the development of pre-primary curriculum

Beginning the week of 14 May, High/Scope Educational Research Foundation based in Michigan, USA will commence a year long UNICEF-sponsored project aimed at establishing an interactive curriculum for the delivery of early childhood education services for children 3 -5 years old, and to train the existing cohort of teachers to effectively teach based on this curriculum.

Drawing on decades of international experience in early childhood research, curriculum and materials development, staff training, assessment and publishing, High/Scope will be first in Dominica and St. Kitts/Nevis from 14 – 19th May and then in Grenada and Antigua and Barbuda from 21 May to review local curriculum materials in use, to discuss the learning outcomes and goals approach with stakeholders, and to identify tasks for local personnel to undertake to amend/replace/develop materials for use in group settings for children from three to five that reflects this approach.

Their second visit later in the year will be used to review the pilot efforts and to plan with local stakeholders how this approach would be taken forward into wider classroom and programme applications, teacher/caregiver training, and parent/public education. Other countries in the UNICEF Multi-Country Programme of the Eastern Caribbean will participate through website communications to share best practices experiences and lessons.

The draft curriculum will be prepared by the High/Scope ECD curriculum specialist and finalized during a sub-regional meeting of the national ECD specialists from Barbados and the OECS. A sub-regional training of trainers workshop for acquainting teachers with the curriculum will be conducted. A series of national training workshops on the new curriculum will ensure that all ECE teachers will know how to teach interactively and prototype learning materials will be mass-produced for use in every ECE centre in the selected countries.

This Project is being supported by the Government of Italy through the UNICEF Office for Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean.

© UNICEF Eastern Caribbean Office/2007/Dabney
Jermaine James, member of the Young Leaders group of the Archibald Washington High School in St. Kitts explains their HIV/AIDS project to Heather Stewart, UNICEF, Ryan Watson, Euan McIntyre and Fraser Watts of the Scotland Cricket Team

Mr. Watson and Mr.Watts also took the opportunity to engage in a friendly “match” with the Young Leaders and passed on a few tips on the game they love to them.

Heather Stewart, UNICEF Child Protection Specialist and focal point for St. Kitts and Nevis indicated that she hoped this visit by the cricketers would be the beginning of a lasting partnership with cricket associations, in which the game can be used as a tool for positive development among Caribbean teens.

She also noted that the visits were important in showing the world the role that Caribbean youths were playing in the fight against HIV/AIDS.

“To have the youth of St. Kitts and Nevis so actively involved in the fight against HIV is what UNICEF strives for,” said Ms. Stewart, who accompanied the cricketers on their visit. “The partnership between UNICEF and the other organisations in Unite for Children, Unite Against AIDS presents a wonderful opportunity for the world to see the extent of the impact of HIV and AIDS in the Caribbean on youth and their response to the pandemic.”

Jermaine James, one of the Washington Archibald students, was certainly impacted by the visit. “The visit by the members of the Scottish team has really inspired us to reach above and beyond. With the World Cup in St. Kitts, the world is at our doorstep and we have a chance to help stop the spread of HIV among people our age.”

Joining the students were also the two CARICOM Youth Ambassadors from St. Kitts and Nevis, Khalea Robinson and Jolanie Jones. Jones and Robinson led the Mini Grant programme that included the work of the Young Leaders group that was show-cased to the cricketers from the Scottish team.



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